Sunday, February 6, 2011

Brinjal Masala Gravy

When I saw these luscious, perfect, purple beauties at the grocery store I couldn't resist myself and brought home quite a big bag of them. I had so many ideas of what to make with them and one of those was this tasty, spicy gravy. You could make this as a stuffed brinjal gravy as well but since my husband likes the eggplants to be really well cooked and I had no intention of using a lot of oil, I cut them into quarters, smeared them with the masala and roasted them in the oven first before adding them to the gravy. Works out great!

Another tip would be to make this curry well ahead of time and allow it to rest for about 6-8 hours before serving. Something magical happens during that time and the flavours mature resulting in a much tastier dish than if you were serving right away. I know it seems like a long list of ingredients and quite a process, but you can do quite a few things in parallel to cut down on the time. However, do not cut down on the simmering time or the resting time - the results are definitely worth the wait.


Fresh (indian) Brinjals - 6 to 7, cut into 4 or 6 pieces each (lengthwise)
Cloves - 1 or 2
Cinnamon - one 1 inch piece
Cardamom - 1
Aniseed (Sombu/Saunf) - small pinch
Oil - 2 tbsp

For Masala powder:
Roast the following in a few drops of oil and grind to a powder
Urad dhal - 2 tsp
Coriander seeds / Coriander powder - 1 tsp (if using powder, don't roast or add last)
Methi seeds - a tiny pinch (5)
Sesame seeds - 1 tsp
Dried Red Chillies - 4 to 5
Roasted Groundnuts /Peanuts - 2 tbsp
Dessicated Coconut - 2 tbsp (Fresh grated would work too)

For Gravy:
Fry the following in 1 tsp oil and grind together
Onion - 1 medium, cut into big pieces
Tomato - 1, cut into big pieces
Garlic cloves - 4
Ginger - half inch piece
Green Chillies - 6

1) Preheat oven to 425F. Coat the eggplant pieces with the masala powder. Spray with oil and spread as a single layer on a baking sheet, skin side down and cook in a 425F oven for about 30 mins or till soft.

2) Meanwhile, fry and grind the ingredients for the gravy.

3) Heat oil in a pan and add the cloves, cinnamon, cardamom and aniseed, then add the ground onion-tomato paste and fry on medium for about 10 minutes or till oil separates.

4) Add the cooked eggplant pieces along with any remaining masala powder and required amount of water to make a thick gravy and allow to come to a boil. Cover and allow to simmer for about 20-30 mins.

Ideally make this curry the previous day to allow the flavours to come together or atleast allow to rest for 6 to 8 hrs before serving. This is equally delicious with rice or rotis.


  1. Looks delicious ....and spicy ...nice pics

  2. a great treat for brinjal lovers like me. The masala sounds interesting

  3. Lovely brinjals :) Love the recipe,now you tempt me so much to eaat some thing with brijal!

  4. Tempting gravy...looks and sounds yum

  5. Woww mouthwatering here..very tempting and droolworthy gravy..

  6. curry looks delcious,..luv the idea of raosting the brinjals,..

  7. I agree, Brinjal curries tend to taste better the second day :) Especially, if I re-roast them in a pan the second day, it tastes divine to me!

    Nice gravy, Laavanya! Looks spicy and yummy..

  8. Wow, u made me drool.. I must have this ;)

  9. Love this gravy. Very delicious looking.

  10. Oven roasting the brinjals before adding to the gravy is a healthy tip. Curry looks amazing.

  11. Wow!!! I am gonna make this tomorrow. Looks so tempting.

  12. Anything Brinjal I am in love, like the way u roasted them!

  13. I am sooooooo drooling over that gravy. Love it.

  14. that is a lavish gravy, would love to have it with some hot rice:)

  15. Laavanya looks just amazing. Have not eaten brinjals in a while and this tempts me a lot.

  16. Curry preparation looks awesome. Drooling over it.

  17. looks tempting..

  18. Superb and awesome

  19. Wow. Its been a long time since i have seen such perfect Brinjals indeed.. Great recipe.. have bookmarked it.

  20. Thank you everyone. I hope you do get a chance to try this yummy curry.


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